Ivan Martin Jirous

Ivan Martin Jirous, [[Ostrava]], December 11, 2007 Ivan Martin Jirous (23 September 1944 – 9 November 2011) was a Czech poet and dissident, best known as the artistic director of the Czech psychedelic rock group The Plastic People of the Universe, and later one of the key figures of the Czech underground during the communist regime. He is more frequently known as Magor, which can be roughly translated as "shithead", "loony", or "fool" (though meant as a positive title), a nickname given to him by the experimental poet .

Trained as an art historian but unable to work in this field in Czechoslovakia under the Communist regime, Jirous became a member of the dissident subculture, and during the period of normalisation, Jirous was imprisoned five times for his activities. His particular contribution to the dissident movement was the concept of "second culture", according to which simply expressing oneself through forbidden cultural and artistic activities would ultimately undermine the totalitarian system, a concept closely related to his friend Václav Havel's "living in truth", and Václav Benda's "parallel polis".

Jirous won the Jaroslav Seifert Prize in 2006 and the Tom Stoppard Prize in 1985 for the poem ''Magor's Swan Song'' (). Provided by Wikipedia
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